Organizers Grapple with “Big-ticket Invitation” for Samurai Japan’s European National Team Game | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Organizers Grapple with “Big-ticket Invitation” for Samurai Japan’s European National Team Game

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On March 6 and 7, Samurai Japan, led by Hirokazu Ibata, 48, a former standout with the Chunichi and Giants, played the European team at Kyocera Dome Osaka. The team drew a lot of attention by selecting four active university students for the first time, but behind the scenes, the people involved were scrambling to make up for the lack of attendance.

Although there was a lot of good news for the baseball world in the European games, such as the use of university students, it was hard to shake off the subdued atmosphere of the event,” confided an NPB official.

An NPB official confides, Both games were played in prime time on TV.

Both games were played at 7:10 p.m., which is easy to broadcast on prime time TV. 27,698 spectators visited the stadium for the first game, and 25,379 spectators for the second game. It seems that the seats are fairly full. However, most of the guests were actually fans who were emergency mobilized by the organizers.

What do you mean? The person concerned continues.

 The Giants, who had just returned from a tour of Taiwan, decided not to send their players to the event in order to prioritize their preparations for the season. As a result, there were no stars who could bring in the crowds, and tickets did not sell well.

The NPB continued to promote the event until the last minute by appealing in the media that same-day tickets would be available, but there was no guarantee that tickets would be sold, so as a last resort, theNPB distributed invitation tickets everywhere.

It wasn’t the organizers or the players who disliked the empty seats, but the TV stations that broadcast.TBS and TV Asahi paid broadcasting rights fees and broadcast live on the golden band. The station’s main goal is to broadcast the main event of the international tournament WBSC Premier 12 to be held this fall. This time, we are trying to build a track record towards that goal. Although the broadcast is meant to be sowing seeds, it has not received any attention from the public. If the upper management of the station found out, it would hinder Honmaru’s efforts to acquire broadcast rights. Therefore, invitation tickets were distributed through a company that sponsored Samurai Japan on the condition that participants definitely attend.

Last season, the WBC had everyone in Japan excited, and the upper management of TV stations believed that the baseball bubble would return. However, when we opened the lid, all the staff at the site said with a wry smile, It was just a Shohei Ohtani bubble. It is unclear whether Japanese major leaguers will participate in this fall’s Premier 12. It makes you think about the future.

Come to think of it, the only major leaguers making headlines in the media right now are Shohei Otani (29) and Yu Darvish (37). The future of Japanese professional baseball is in jeopardy.

  • PHOTO Kyodo News

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